Category Archives: Helpful Hints

Jogging or Walking the Diamond Head Loop

Excellent Morning Walk/Jog Near Waikiki

 On vacation and feeling guilty because you strayed from the diet plan?  Go for a walk or jog around Diamond Head!  It’s scenic, it’s close to Waikiki and if you go early enough, you can end with watching the sunrise.  Also, there are a few beaches & Kapiolani Regional Park you can check out.


 To me, there’s nothing better than an early morning activity.  You feel great afterwards.  Get the endorphin’s going, you feel productive, you don’t feel guilty downing a two liter of coca-cola when you’re done.  Ha-ha!  Minus the coca-cola, you feel great.  The hardest part is getting up!  Just check out this pic in all its glory.  This is why you’ll want to turn that early morning frown upside down.

 We started jogging at 6:15 am from the corner of Monsarrat Ave & Paki Ave for a 7:00 – 7:15 sunrise.  Made our way clockwise around Diamond Head.  Monsarrat turns into Diamond Head Rd and you follow all the way around back to Paki Ave.  Total length of the loop is 3.9 miles.  Although be sure to time everything for the sunrise if that’s what you want.  There are look out areas above Diamond Head Beach Park before you get back to Paki Ave where you can sit and enjoy.  With jogging/walking, it took us just over 30 minutes in the direction we went to get to the look out area for the sunrise.


 And if you want to reward yourself with some delicious breakfast afterwards, check out  Bogart’s Espresso & Cafe Bar on Monsarrat & Kanaina Ave.  You’ll feel your day is already complete.  Insert smiley face here.

Written by Johann Moguel

Puna Lava Flow update


On the Big Island of Hawaii the Puna Lava Flow has stalled near the Pahoa Transfer Station, however breakouts are still occurring. The current front has narrowed to 50 yards but is maintaining its path of steepest descent which will take it directly towards the Pahoa Marketplace. It is currently advancing at approximately 300 yards a day and is about 1.2 miles away from highway 130 and Pahoa Village Road.


The terrain in the area could impact the speed and direction of the flow in the next several days, but it has been consistently advancing at a rate of 300 yards a day since last Thursday. The flow is expected to arrive at Pahoa Village Road and Highway 130 in the next 7-10 days. No evacuations have currently been ordered, but every business in the Pahoa Marketplace and the shopping center across the street has been given notice. Most businesses have expressed their intent to stay as long as they can safely serve their customers, most have said it will take about 3 days to evacuate.


Hawaii County Civil Defense officials continue with their plans to open the Pahoa Transfer Station for public viewing of the lava flow that stalled in the area in early November. Thousands of students have been to see the stalled front on school trips. Mayor Billy Kenoi has made that a priority to allow children who have been displaced by the flow, to visit and see the stalled front. Smoke conditions remain moderate, and their is no threat of a brush fire due to the recent rainfall in the area.


Pahoa Village Road remains open to the public, and people are reminded drivers to drive carefully due to the utility pole protection material that is still in place. We would also like to remind people to please respect residents who have been displaced by the lava flow and do not trespass onto private property.  For the latest information on the flow you can visit Hawaii County Civil Defense or you can contact Hawaii County Civil Defense at (808) 935-0031.

Written by James Bredeson

Polynesian Adventure movie open casting call


For young female actresses aged 14-18 years of age, the Disney company is holding a worldwide casting call for the vocal lead in an upcoming movie. The movie is a feature length animated comedy/adventure featuring a spirited female teenager and her lovable sidekick, a pot bellied pig along with a legendary hero. The new Disney Princess will be named “Manoa” as will the feature film.


The movie is being set approximately 2,000 years ago and features a young polynesian from a mythical area called Oceania. She discovers that the future of her people is in jeopardy and sets off across the vast ocean in search of a new mythical land. During her travels she encounters mystical sea creatures and various underworlds. She uses her seafaring knowledge and strives to find the island and make her ancestors proud. The film will be written directed by the duo of Ron Clements and Jon Musker, whose credits include; The little mermaid, Aladdin, and The Princess and the Frog. The movie is set to hit theaters on November 26, 2016.


Casting directors will be looking for a female with the following requirements; 14-18 years of age, Smart, passionate, funny, brave, inquisitive, and confident. A teenager who yearns for something more and adventurous. The candidate must have a strong singing voice. In order to be considered you will need to send a video of yourself framed close up that shows your head and shoulders with plenty of light on you. In your video you will need to introduce yourself, you should spend some time practicing this several times before you film. Explain to the casting directors why you would make a great Moana. After this you will need to give us your email contact and your phone contacts. Please get your parents permission if you are under the age of 18 years. Then widen the frame and film yourself in mid take singing part of a song that you perform well (no longer than one minute). Upload the video to an online video hosting website such as YouTube or Vimeo. Then you will need to mail a headshot and resume along with a cover letter clearly stating the EXACT URL link to your online video to the following address:


Moana Talent Submission
Jamie Sparer Roberts
Walt Disney Studios
500 South Buena Vista Street
Burbank, CA 91502

Good luck to all people who give it a try and submit their auditions more information can be found here. Aloha and Mahalo hope to see/hear you in the upcoming film!

Written by James Bredeson

How to make Leonards Malasadas at home


Here in Hawaii, we all love our malasadas especially if they are from Leonard’s Bakery! Today I will share the recipe given by Chef Leonard Rego of Leonard’s Bakery so you will be able to attempt to make these delicious Hawaiian treats for yourself. My mouth is watering just thinking about getting started. All totaled this recipe will take you just over 2 hours from start to finish. So lets get started shall we?


First off you will need to make sure you have all the ingredients. The ingredients listed below will make an estimated 24 malasadas for your enjoyment.

Yeast Mixture Dry Ingredients
2 Teaspoons Active Dry Yeast 4 cups All Purpose Flour
1/4 cup warm water 1/2 teaspoon of salt
1 Tablespoon of sugar 2 teaspoons of grated nutmeg
Wet Ingredients Cinammon Sugar Coating
4 well beaten eggs 1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted ground cinammon added to taste
1/3 cup sugar
2/3 cup of milk Vegetable Oil for frying
1 teaspoon of Vanilla extract

Now that we know what we will be working with, Let’s begin: In a medium sized mixing bowl combine the dry yeast and warm water and 1 tablespoon of sugar. Mix until the yeast is completely dissolved, and set aside for 5 minutes. While that is sitting we can start on the dry ingredients. In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, nutmeg and salt together. Once they are combined make a sort of well in the middle, then set aside. Grab the yeast mixture and stir in the milk, vanilla, butter and eggs. Now we take the dry ingredients and add the wet ingredients into the well that we formed earlier. Mix the ingredients together until a nice smooth soft dough forms. Then we cover the dough with a clean towel and place in a warm spot until the mixture doubles in size, this usually takes about an hour.


After the dough has risen, take the bowl and push the dough down. Oil your fingers and pinch off golf ball sized pieces of dough and place on greased baking sheets. Grab another clean towel and cover the malasadas and again place in a warm spot for approximately 15 minutes. While that is waiting, we can prepare a heavy high sided pan with oil for frying. Heat about 2 inches of the vegetable oil until it reaches 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Then test the oil by dropping a small amount of the dough into the oil, the dough should start to color almost immediately.


Working in small batches fry the malasadas until they are a nice uniform golden brown, this usually takes between 7 and 10 minutes. Place the fried malasadas on a plate that has been lined with paper towels until they are cool enough to handle. Then all you have left to do is roll them in the cinnamon-sugar coating and serve these marvelous delicacies to all of your friends and family.


They will always ask for more or for you to make these amazing snacks for every event or get together. This island favorite is sure to please just about any palate. I’d like to take this time to thank Chef Leonard Rego of Leonard’s Bakery for sharing this recipe with the rest of us, so that we too can enjoy these at home.

Written by James Bredeson




Jellyfish Season in Hawaii


Jellyfish are a potential nuisance when deciding what beach you may want to visit while staying in Hawaii. If you are aware of the potential dates that many jellyfish may arrive it will assist you in making preparations. Most of the beaches affected in Hawaii are the south facing shores, however jellyfish can show up on any beach at anytime. The jellyfish types that are most common here in the islands are the Box, Moon, and many lagoon varieties. While these fascinating creatures pique our curiosity, they do have the ability to hurt you via the tentacles that provide a burning stinging sensation.


Jellyfish generally arrive between 8-12 days after a full moon. On Oahu, the south facing shores that may be affected during this time include; Waikiki, Ala Moana Beach Park, Haunama Bay, and the Waianae Coast. On Kauai warnings can be found posted at Poipu Beach. Maui and Big Island beaches can be affected but generally have fewer issues. Please remember just because these are the most affected areas jellyfish can be at any beach. The box jellyfish and the Portugese Man of War are the most painful stings in Hawaii so please take care.


The Portugese Man of War is identified by its purplish body and is commonly found on the windward sides of the islands. The Box jellyfish is identified by the box shape that it takes. If you happen upon a jellyfish on the beach, do not touch it! Even if it might be dead the tentacles can still provide a very painful sting. Be safe and aware, check with the lifeguard about potential hazards and look on the beach for washed up jellyfish. Remember the timing 8-12 days after a full moon are the most likely times for a jellyfish invasion.


If you do happen to get stung by one of these varieties there are a few simple steps that you can take to help alleviate the pain. First, you will want to carefully remove the jellyfish and tentacles using a towel or napkin or anything other than your fingers. Next you will want to rinse the affected area with water or vinegar. The vinegar works to deactivate the toxins and remove the remaining tentacles. After that you can apply hot water or ice packs in order to reduce the duration and intensity of the pain. If you suffer a serious reaction seek medical attention immediately, in some people jellyfish stings may cause an allergic reaction leading to anaphylactic shock or in rare instances death. Just use these guidelines and remain observant and we can all enjoy the beautiful beaches these magnificent islands provide us with. Aloha!

Written by James Bredeson

Ocean Safety guidelines for Hawaiian Islands


Living in or traveling to Hawaii, everyone should be familiar with at least some ocean safety guidelines. As winter swell approach I think its best to return our attention to some simple things that can minimize our risk and make our beach going days a lot better, not to mention a lot safer. One of the first things you need to remember is go to the beach with the intention of having a great time, we live among some of the most scenic beaches in the world. Remember to bring your sunblock, even if it is cloudy. Water, you must keep yourself hydrated, even if you do not realize it we sweat a great deal while swimming or any other physical activity at the beach!


If you have no experience of the Hawaii shorelines, do not venture into unguarded beaches, this will minimize your risk to yourselves and friends. Some of our beaches during certain times of the year have dangerous waves and currents, and most of the time when a person is involved in an incident it is because of a choice they made and not a random accident. So if you are unsure of the conditions talk to a lifeguard in the area, if there is no lifeguard pay attention to what others may be doing out in the water and the where the wave breaks. Do not be afraid to ask anyone at the shore what hazards may be waiting for you.


There is a short acronym that may help you out with these simple tips; SOAKStudy the conditions of the ocean before going into the water. Observe the activities of the others already in the water. Ask lifeguards or others about the current conditions and the conditions for the remainder of the day. Know your own personal limits, and do not attempt to exceed them. With these simple tips you should be able to avoid many common problems associated with the ocean and shoreline here in Hawaii.


However, if you do get caught in a rip current (a current that rushes back into the ocean through the low lying spots created by the wave break) there are a couple simple things that you can do to help yourself. First off, do not panic! Conserve your energy, tread water, float, and do not forget to breathe and wave for help if you can. Next swim out of the current, traveling parallel to the shoreline. This will get you away from the current at which point you can now swim at an angle back to the shoreline, avoiding the current. If you cannot get out of the current, stay calm and float or tread water. You will be able to tread water as there will not be an undertow with a rip current. If you need any help or assistance do not hesitate to wave your arms and call for help.

With winter swells fast approaching these few tips and reminders will hopefully help keep us all safe and enjoying this beautiful island. Be safe and I will hopefully see you at the beach! Mahalo and Aloha!

Written by James Bredeson

Cheap flight ideas to Hawaii


The West Coast Flights:
Flights to and from the west coast are normally cheaper because they are the closest flights and use less gas. If you look for cheap tickets to the west coast then look into air line tickets to California. You will probably save money booking a connecting flight yourself because vacation tickets to Hawaii can have marked up prices.


Flights from Las Vegas:
Many Hawaiian’s choose to vacation to Las Vegas because the flights out there can be so inexpensive. Lets face it when you already live in Hawaii and taking your vacation means leaving paradise where are you going to go…? My wife and I decided to go to Rome for our honeymoon and it was the best trip I have ever taken. However the most trips we take are to Vegas because we have family there and the flights are always on special discounts.


One Way Tickets to Hawaii:
I believe buying two one way tickets to Hawaii is cheaper than buying the round trip because you appear to be a local traveling home. Students also purchase one way tickets to start the school year for the University of Hawaii. The last trip I took out to Portland I saved about $200 because I got all one way flights. I also noticed it was cheaper to fly into Las Vegas first the out to Portland. This is because the airlines charge tourist more money for flights and it doesn’t hurt to look.


Hawaiian Email List:
I would suggest getting on Hawaiian email list and give them your home destination. They will send you specials all year around for discounted lights. They will say you have to book in the next 7 days for the following month or later and those prices are pretty hard to beat. The airline usually picks times or months that are slow and this promotes sales for the airlines. I like to take advantage of these times and visit one of the neighbor islands, so when you get out here you could already plan a weekend trip to see the Volcano on the Big Island.


United Airlines Club Room:
The last trip I took I upgraded to the United Airlines club room and I loved it. They provide many places to sit down with free wifi internet with a full service office, printer, and fax machine. They also had breakfast, coffee, tea, and alcohol beverages for free. I must say it was the best layover I have ever had.

The Rogue Wave and learning to respect the Ocean

Every 30th to 40th wave comes a wave that is much larger than all the waves before it. Basically the set of 4 waves merge and create a super wave. Recent studies have shown that these rogue waves may be more common that we first thought. Some believe this may be the reason why so many boats have gone down in the Bermuda Triangle and the swept in the abyss.


Painfully having to learn things the hard way, I escaped with my life about the 8th time I attempted to surf. Almost getting the hang of it but not really grasping it yet. You see I came from a snowboarding background and people tell you ‘oh if you can snowboard, surfing should come easy’. They could not be more wrong and here is why. First when you are snow boarding you start standing up. Second you do NOT have salt water splashing in your face. Third paddling a surf board is all upper body strength and the ability to center yourself, not only side to side but front to back also.


So on this most beautiful day a would-be-friend takes be to a beach that had awesome waves. However this 8 foot wave hung for about 35 to 40 yards and was beautiful. This bay in Waimea had a reef that channeled the power of the wave giving it a deceiving strength. Basically this would be considered a top level surfing beach, my friend told me I should give it a try. Breaking one of my first lessons of Hawaii Ocean Safety: Don’t go in the water if someone is not already there. He was not a good friend, this beach literally spit me out onto the beach.


After about 10 minutes of assessing the situation I should have followed my instincts and have not gone in, but then I would not be telling this story. I paddled off of the beach and made it through the wave by pushing under it and holding on like my life depended on it. As I looked up the 2nd wave was a Rogue Wave was heading towards me and it looked like a 10 to 12 foot wave and I was directly in the kill zone (where the wave folds over and hits the water). Panicking I started to paddle to the right and I was hoping to get out of the way. Since I didn’t try to go under the wave, it lifted me up and smacked the board back at me. Hitting my elbow and dislocating my shoulder and smacking me in the face and spat me out onto the beach.


After this day I really started to give the ocean more respect. Trust your instincts and remember the ocean is the most powerful element on our planet. So respect it.


Bike riding and safety in Honolulu, Hawaii


A Couple Simple Rules.

1. Watch out for drive ways
People in cars most times will look one way when pulling out and as you are crossing a street or driveway you should stop as if they are NOT going to notice you trying to cross. An automobile would easily crush you so why leave your life in a strangers hands? Be safe with your own life.


2. Watch out for car doors
One of the first times I rode my bike in Honolulu I almost hit a car door opening. If someone is in a car you are passing, you should plan as if they are going to open the door and don’t be surprised when it happens. Remember they probably can’t see or hear you coming.


3. Lock your bike up with a chain
Some people will walk or ride off with your bike, it is highly advised to lock up your bike here on Oahu.


4. Stop and Help
Stop and help any sweet old ladies crossing the street it only takes a minute and you may just be the sunshine in someones day. I had a lovely conversation with a sweet old lady who used to be a Bon Festival dancer. Spread the Aloha.

Kid helping senior lady crossing the street

Honolulu Fish and Seafood Auction at Pier 38


The History of the Honolulu Fish Auction:
Here in Hawaii on a daily basis fresh fish are caught and brought into Honolulu and sold at auction. It has been done this way since the 1950′s and put pricing the fish in the hands of the buyer. This ensures that the fresh fish are sold in town at stores and restaurants and are guaranteed fresh day to day. The fish are brought in daily by the hundreds and are on display for buyers to walk down the rows and get ready to bid on the fish they want the most. About 100k lbs of fish pass through here daily and are brought to the people.


The Auction Day:
Fish are brought in and delivered to the Pier just after 12:00 am Monday through Saturday. Once the fish are weighted and checked for color and quality, they are graded based on these variables and then bidders will have an idea of the value of the fish. Around 5:00 am the floor opens to bidding for the very fresh, non frozen fish by the ding of a large bell.


Safety & Inspection:
The quality control and safety of this process is handles by the UFA (United Fishing Agency) as well as the USFDA (United Stats Food & Drug Admin) once a year. For the last 50 years, this process is the main reason here in Hawaii you can get some of the best sushi in the world. This melting pot of different cultures you can get many kinds of flavors and styles for cooking sea food. Tours are also available of this pier 38 and process of the Fish Auction.